By Chester Dunbar
Emerald City Comics brings real live super heroes to Pinellas County and beyond. Like the superheroes in comic books, Emerald City promotes literacy by going to schools and libraries. Marketing Director of Emerald City Comics, Daryll Blaker said, “Comic books help children read because comics are visual. Comic books help children think outside of the box and are good for problem solving.”
Emerald City is celebrating its birthday throughout the month of September. The store is filled with comic books and games from new to old. For instance, Emerald City has Batman and Robin gadgets for the older generation and different types of video games for the younger generation. Emerald City has a variety of things from the Simpsons to a Dick Tracy set of collectible cards from the 80’s. Blaker said, “During the month of September, we are having some major sales through the entire store on merchandise and a couple of special guest appearances by super heroes will be present.”
One of the major comic books that has been banned is the Amazing Spider- Man: Revelations by J. Michael Straczynsky, John Romita, Jr., and Scott Hanna. Spider-Man is one of Emerald City’s favorite characters. The store has all kinds of different merchandise on Spider-Man. In fact, the Amazing Spider- Man #14 from July 1964 has the famous Stan Lee’s signature on it and is a collector’s item. With Banned Books Week coming up, Darryl Blacker said that, “Censorship should not be put in stories and writers should have the right to write what they desire.”
Darryl Blacker explained what a graphic novel is using Scott Pilgrim as an example. “Comic books are set up with a rating system like movies,” Blacker explained. “If the comics have adult content or an explicit rating, the comic books are kept away from under-aged children for their protection.”
Emerald City Comics is also coming to the Pinellas Comic Con and Maker Fest at the Seminole Library on October 17, 2015. The Comic Con brings out a lot of different fans who dress up as different super heroes. Michael Wright, a customer, said, “I am excited about the Comic Con at the Seminole Library and I am attending.”
Emerald City usually does not make guest appearances at conventions because they are well established, but Blaker said, “I am looking forward to Costume Play when people dress up as different super heroes such as Star Wars and Batman.”
Emerald City is located at 4902 113th Avenue in Clearwater, Florida. The store hours are Monday- Saturday 11-9 and Sunday 12-6. In addition, the shop has a website address at emeraldcitycomics.com that shows all of the store’s special and upcoming events. In fact, the store has online shopping, so you can buy comics from the comfort of your own home.